100 Days Selected Project for Unity & Dialogue

Amizade has spent 22 years inspiring over 10,000 empathetic, engaged global citizens through service-learning programs in 12 countries. Recently we focused on ensuring that all people, regardless of income, could access our programs. We are proud of this work, but after November 8th we realized that our entire sector – however effective in creating global citizens – was failing to link local communities. Building on experience with cross-community projects in Northern Ireland, we will bring youth from rural and urban communities together for an intensive and socially active experience.

Our pilot project – Renovating Community Bridges in Western Pennsylvania – will break down network-barriers and provide young people from urban and rural communities the opportunity to explore issues of identity, power, and privilege together. The open dialogue will give students the opportunity to explore their biases, and the biases expressed in media, that often define who they and their communities are. We believe that, by providing a safe space for youth to learn about the diverse cultures around them, and immersing them in one another’s culture, we can transform the way they view the “other” and bridge these networks.

This program will begin with a series of workshops where a small group of young people will explore topics surrounding stereotypes, identity, and poverty. The participants will then spend five days in each community and two days in Washington, DC as way to encourage them to continue to travel, learn, and experience communities beyond their home. Upon return, the participants will bring together the themes of diversity and unity with a community-based event to share what they learned. Research suggests that knowing at least one person that is part of a group different from your own can help facilitate and encourage empathy. The success of this pilot program will allow us to create a model, and set a standard for future cross-cultural dialogue program.

Project Leader/Applicant:

Sara Noel from Pittsburgh (Lawrenceville)

Additional Team Members:

Tyisha Burroughs

Project Budget:

$5,000

Related Links:

amizade.org/ Amizade Global Service-Learning has been empowering individuals and communities through worldwide service and learning since 1994. Over 9,000 individuals have served with local community leaders in 12 countries on 4 continents with 16 partnerships. From working with women and girls on rainwater harvesting initiatives in rural Tanzania to running at-risk youth camps in Jamaica, Amizade volunteers have transformed and been transformed.
youtu.be/SLIEE9dgDgk [video] Friendship, reciprocity, and global leadership in the Hill District. Amizade will expand on our work with urban youth in Pittsburgh’s Hill District neighborhood.

Important Dates:

  • April 1: Pre-immersion workshop #1: Introductions, Stereotypes, Identity
  • May 1: Pre-Immersion workshop #2: Language, power, privilege
  • June 1: Pre-Immersion workshop #3: Immigration and Integrations, Poverty
  • July 1: Pre-Immersion workshop #4: Pre-departure preparation, teamwork and group travel
  • July 18: Day 1: Arrive in rural community, service projects, community meetings
  • July 19: Day 2: Travel to Pittsburgh: Community tours and meeting
  • July 20: Day 3: Service project in Pittsburgh, travel to Washington DC, tour of the monuments and national mall
  • July 21: Day 4: Visit to US Holocaust Memorial Museum and National Museum of African American History and Culture
  • July 22: Day 5: DC service project, visit US Capital, return home
  • August 1: Post-program meeting: Reflect, debrief, plan community event
  • September 1: Participant designed community event to share experience and learning